How to launch an online charity auction: 10 simple steps


Launching a successful online charity auction takes careful planning and strategy. In this blog post, we'll share 10 tips on how to help you with that, from setting goals to engaging with donors and bidders.

1. Set a clear goal

Before setting up your charity auction, it's important to set a clear goal for how much money you hope to raise. Make sure the goal is realistic and achievable, and communicate it clearly to potential bidders.

2. Choose the right platform

There are many online auction platforms to choose from, so be sure to research and choose the one that's best for your charity. Consider factors such as ease of use, pricing, and the ability to integrate with your website and social media.

3. Create a compelling auction catalogue

Your auction catalogue should be visually appealing and easy to navigate, with detailed descriptions and high-quality photos of each item up for bid. Consider offering unique experiences, like private tours or meet-and-greets with celebrities, in addition to traditional items like merchandise.

4. Create buzz with social media

Make sure to promote your auction widely to maximise participation. Use social media, email marketing, and targeted advertising to reach potential bidders. Reach out to influencers and media outlets who may be interested in promoting your auction.

5. Offer multiple payment options

Make it easy for bidders to pay for their items by offering multiple payment options, such as credit cards, PayPal, or bank transfers. You can also consider offering a discount for payments made through certain methods.

6. Make the auction competitive

Encourage bidding by making the auction competitive. Use a timer to create a sense of urgency, and offer incentives like free shipping or exclusive items.

7. Engage with bidders

Keep bidders engaged throughout the auction by providing updates on bidding activity and offering opportunities to ask questions about items. Consider hosting a live Q&A session or auction preview to generate excitement.

8. Recognise and thank donors

Make sure to recognise and thank donors for their contributions. Send personalised thank-you notes, showcase top donors on your website and social media, and consider offering special incentives for repeat donors.

9. Follow up

After the auction is over, follow up with bidders and donors to thank them again for their support. Provide updates on how their donations are making a difference, and offer opportunities for continued engagement with your charity.

10. Learn and improve

Take the time to evaluate the success of your auction and identify areas for improvement. Use feedback from bidders and donors to make these improvements.

Bottom line

Hosting an online charity auction can be a powerful way to inspire generosity and philanthropy in your community. In the meantime, we encourage you to participate in the auction we have launched in support of Roald Dahl's Marvellous Children's Charity!

GTS Team
October 5, 2023